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Paul Ince stands by claims he could have made same impact as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Old Trafford

The former midfielder maintains that anybody with strong ties to the Red Devils could have addressed the issues which were holding the club back.

OGS: has staked a claim for the permanent job.
OGS: has staked a claim for the permanent job.

PAUL INCE HAS reiterated his belief that he, Mark Hughes, Steve Bruce or any other former Manchester United star could have made the same impact as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer when succeeding Jose Mourinho.

The Red Devils have gone unbeaten through 10 games since making a change in the dugout back in December, winning nine of those fixtures, and look like a different side to that which stumbled out of the blocks under their Portuguese coach.

Solskjaer has earned plenty of plaudits for the job he has overseen, but Ince stands by his clams that anybody could have addressed the issues which were holding an underperforming side back.

The former United midfielder told BBC Sport: “I caused a bit of a stir over the weekend when I said I could have done what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has done at Manchester United, but let me explain a bit more what I was getting at.

“With nine wins from 10 games as United’s interim boss, Ole has been absolutely fantastic. He has lifted the cloud from over Old Trafford, and the team is playing a lot better than they were under Jose Mourinho.

“But we all knew the problems United had under Mourinho and, as a manager, I know it is relatively simple to solve them in the short term.

“My argument was that it was easy for whoever came in after that to right the ship, and lift the players and the dressing room – and put the whole club back on track.

“When I said anyone could have come in and done the same, I did not mean to be disrespectful to Ole.

“What I meant was any manager – for example, myself, Mark Hughes or Steve Bruce – could have recognised the issues at Old Trafford and come in and changed the environment in a positive way.

“There is far more to it than just bringing some of the fun back, but you would start by allowing the players to play with freedom, and in their correct positions, too. Ole has done all of that and has obviously made a big difference.

“With his results, he has then taken it on to the next level, too, but even that improvement does not mean he is the right man to get the job in the summer.

“It is easy to change the mood of a club but the real job at United is far bigger than that. There is a lot of rebuilding to be done, over the next three or four years, so they can compete with Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham for the title.”

Ince added on the need for United to resist the urge to rush into making a hasty decision on Solskjaer, with no call made on a permanent appointment as yet: “At the moment there is no pressure on Ole or his players. They don’t have to worry about anything because expectations were so low when Mourinho got the sack.

“At that stage, they were 11 points off the top four, and most United fans were thinking that just a top-six finish would be great, whoever came in.

“Ole has arrived and changed the way everyone is feeling, including the supporters, and all of a sudden there is a little bit of excitement back. So are their hopes of making the top four.

“But we don’t know how he deals with adversity – when things start going wrong, when results dip and when some of his players maybe start biting back. That will happen, because it happens at every club.”

United edged out Leicester 1-0 in their most recent outing, with in-form Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford combining for the only goal of the game, and are now just two points adrift of the Premier League’s top four.

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